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PRESENTING YOUR INVESTIGATION ONLINE Milos Milosavljevic and Anita Rice In this session, well cover these topics: 1. Changing media landscape 2. Writing.

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Presentation on theme: "PRESENTING YOUR INVESTIGATION ONLINE Milos Milosavljevic and Anita Rice In this session, well cover these topics: 1. Changing media landscape 2. Writing."— Presentation transcript:

1 PRESENTING YOUR INVESTIGATION ONLINE Milos Milosavljevic and Anita Rice In this session, well cover these topics: 1. Changing media landscape 2. Writing for the web and publishing online 3. Social media – researching and dissemination online 4. Questions

2 DIGITAL MEDIA (Milos) The economic crisis has seen the editorial teams of media houses in the region stripped down to the minimum, particularly in print. More and more companies are focusing on the web as a publishing AND broadcasting platform and, consequently, a revenue source. As such, journalists are expected to be comfortable producing material for online and print or radio/TV

3 ONLINE PUBLISHING – IT'S ALL ABOUT LINKS (Milos) Your story lives on beyond the site it is published on – including the Balkan Insight and fellowship website Think about key words – whats likely to get picked up by search engines? Make sure all your stories are linked to on your websites and your Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn accounts Make sure all your contacts know about your stories, and ensure they link to your articles via their websites and Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn accounts

4 WRITING FOR THE WEB (Anita) Use shorter sentences and shorter paragraphs than you would for a broadsheet newspaper Word counts are generally much smaller online – users read differently online, they tend to skim pages Break down the story into parts – such as timelines, profiles, case studies, quick guides

5 YOU MUST HAVE PICTURES (Anita) Who wants to read a 2,500 word article without pictures? Not many people. Ensure you have pictures of key interviewees – just like you would for newspapers and magazines Good pictures on the front page of a website entice readers as much as headlines and summary paragraphs – dont forget getting good general images

6 GRAB THE READERS ATTENTION (Anita) Headlines must be short AND exciting/enticing/intriguing Work hard on your opening paragraphs, heres one from last year: Altin has come home to find a virgin. Tall, good– looking and in his thirties, he is back from Britain where he has worked for more than a decade, seeking an appropriate girl to marry. But three weeks into his stay at his hometown of Korce in southern Albania, the hunt is proving frustrating. Its been weeks since I came here and in four more days I have to go back, he complains.

7 USE FACTBOXES (Anita) Fact boxes and at–a–glance guides save you hundreds of words – use them For example, Selvije will probably put together a fact file of key events in the three–years since EULEX came to Kosovo Juliana will probably produce an at–a–glance guide to asylum legislation in Bulgaria and compare to EU directives




11 LINKING TO RELATED STORIES (Anita) You cant show everything on one page so keep fact boxes short However, you can put teasers into your text that lead the reader to related material, such as sidebars/side stories, picture galleries, etc.

12 LINKING TO RELATED STORIES (Anita) See the teasers on the right hand side for the interactive map, video and photo gallery on this story:

13 VIDEO, AUDIO AND MULTIMEDIA CONTENT (Milos) a) Contact me at so we can arrange for it to be sent in the appropriate b) Ensure it has subtitles if it has not been recorded in English c) Ensure Anita has edited the English language subtitles for spelling etc

14 FACTUAL RESEARCH (Anita) FILING STORY ELEMENTS BY 31 JULY You will have to file THREE OR MORE story elements by end of July. These will be agreed in the individual meetings on THURSDAY AND FRIDAY this week and can include quick guides, timelines, profiles, fact boxes, and case studies. THESE SHOULDNT BE A PROBLEM, AS YOU WILL HAVE COMPLETED YOUR FACTUAL RESEARCH WELL BEFORE THE END OF JULY IT ALSO HELPS YOU TO ORGANISE ALL THE ELEMENTS COVERED IN YOUR STORY

15 PROVIDE LINKS TO REPORTS AND SOURCES FOR STATS (Anita) Wikipedia is NOT a source, but worth going to but check out the info/check sources. Plagiarism is not acceptable in any form of journalism – including online See the following for examples of hyperlinks and sources fact files:


17 RELATIONSHIP BETWEEN THE FELLOWSHIP WEBSITE AND THE BALKAN INSIGHT WEBSITE (Anita) The fellowship website – – is where all your material will be published However, stories will also appear on the Balkan Insight website: The fellowship website is in the process of being redesigned, so we can make use of more of the features weve shown you today

18 BI – WEEKLY BLOG–STYLE UPDATES (Anita) You are obliged to provide blog–style updates, of around 400 words, for the fellowship website every two weeks Here are a couple of examples:

19 RIGHTS AND REPUBLICATION (Anita) Ensure you have the rights to reproduce photos, text (e.g. poetry, song lyrics) on the internet Ensure you can get/have the rights for BIRN to offer photos, text etc to third parties/local and international press EG: Stories are published across the region, Der Standard and Al Jazeera English ran three stories online last year

20 EMBARGOES (Anita) Be prepared to adhere to embargoes if your story is syndicated That might mean that a preferred media partner gets first dibs before others It might mean the Balkan Insight/Fellowship cannot publish before a certain date Let Dragana and I know immediately if you might have a deal to publish elsewhere

21 PROMOTING YOUR STORY (Milos) The social web is invaluable in terms of news sourcing and gathering. Make sure you have a profile on the big three: Facebook (discussion and emotion) Twitter (instant news) LinkedIn (professional, expert opinion, debate and resources)

22 PROMOTING YOUR STORY – PART 2 (Milos) The Social Web is a powerful dissemination tool SHARE each of your posts on every social media site where you have an account and try to initiate discussions FIND issue–based communities, pages and groups that deal with the issues you are investigating and contribute your own work MAKE THIS A TEAM EFFORT: All fellows can help each other in this respect by mutually promoting their posts and stories to their networks, thereby amplifying the social mediaeffect

23 GET WEB WISE (Milos) Familiarize yourself on the basic concepts of web journalism, including keywords, links, writing for the web reader Familiarize yourself with web tools for gathering information such as: Delicious (social book marking): Google tools, such as Google News: And Google Reader: Find out how people view content on screen: Download PDF Go to Website:

24 GET MORE WEB WISE (Milos) Get familiar with the concept of citizen or grassroots journalism: READ: PBS Guide READ: The Perils of Citizen Journalism READ: The Dangers of Citizen Journalism

25 OLD SCHOOL JOURNALISM AND CITIZEN JOURNALISM (Milos) The internet has transformed the modern newsroom, you only have to look at the Arab Uprising and the Iranian elections of 2009 to see how central the web, and social media in particular, are to news gathering today Bloggers, Tweeters and YouTubers often beat the big media houses when it comes to breaking news However, this is not the END of the trained journalist. Trained, experienced investigative journalists still rule The web has eroded the barrier between journalist and citizen – and made journalism more transparent – but good news production still depends on good reporting

26 WORK YOUR SOCIAL NETWORKS (Milos) Just as you work your contacts for reporting purposes, make your social network contacts work for you. ORGANISE and expand your professional contacts, groups and lists so that you can effectively reach relevant audiences with a few clicks ACTIVELY follow people and pages that deal with the subject of your investigation (tip: use RSS where available to get updates in Google Reader) ASK FOR INFORMATION: Do not hesitate to ask for bits of information on social media sites. Someone, somewhere may just have the missing puzzle piece

27 AND FINALLY (Milos) Just as you need time to research, organise and write your articles, we need time to edit, arrange, template and publish your material Get in touch well in advance about presentation requirements for photo–galleries, profiles, audio– video material Just ask if youre unsure, perhaps we can help Keep in touch, so we can all work together to give your work the most effective presentation and cross–promotion possible

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